Fernbank Forest Pond Trail


Atlanta, Georgia


4 acres


Fernbank Museum of Natural History


Trail system, riparian corridor, native forest restoration

Fernbank Museum of Natural History is the preeminent Natural Science Museum in the Southeast and one of Atlanta’s most popular cultural destinations. Fernbank’s 120-acre campus includes the 65-acre Fernbank Forest, one of the largest old-growth forests in any U.S. metropolitan area, and a precious remnant of the great Piedmont forests that once blanketed the eastern United States. The Forest itself was the inspiration for Fernbank’s founding and its distinctive environmental legacy as a “school in the woods to teach about nature.” Fernbank is one of the oldest conservation not-for-profits in the United States.

There are 60,000 school children who visit Fernbank Museum annually. Many of them tour Fernbank Forest and walk the pond nature trail, traversing rock outcroppings and the pond edges. Sylvatica designed and permitted a safer adventurous nature trail that allows students to be immersed in a wilder setting while preserving the riparian Forest.

Collaborating with ecologists at Fernbank Museum of Natural History, Sylvatica led a team of environmental and civil engineers to design the trail in this ecologically sensitive setting. Sylvatica’s elevated walkway crosses the creek pond dam, creates a boundary at pond edges, and meets rock outcropping steps with scribed boardwalk decking.

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